V-Dem: Varieties of Democracy

V-Dem, short for Varieties of Democracy, is an exciting project that brings a new  dimension to the discourse of democracy . V-Dem describes their project as a new approach to conceptualizing and  measuring  democracy. It is a collaboration between more than 50 scholars worldwide and co-hosted by the Department of Political Science at the University of Gothenburg,…

Decentralization in Ukraine: An antidote for conflict

Recently decentralization has been surfacing in European and U.S media as a solution for the current conflict in Ukraine. The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, and the Vice Chancellor, Sigmar Gabriel, have openly endorsed decentralization as a means to curb the continuing destruction of human life and regain safety in the region. Could power sharing between the different regions and…

Women’s Political Empowerment in Cote d’Ivoire: Mariam Dao Gabala on Advocacy and the US-Africa Summit

During the US-Africa Leaders Summit early last month, hosted by President Barack Obama in Washington, DC, the National Democratic Institute invited Mariam Dao Gabala, distinguished advocate of women’s political participation and financial inclusion, from Cote d’Ivoire to lead a discussion focused on Women, Peace, and Democracy in Cote d’Ivoire. Gabala is the president of Coalition des Femmes Leaders de…

The Gorée Institute

In 1987 there was a historic meeting in Dakar, Senegal between the exiled leaders of the African National Congress (ANC) and a group of influential South Africans. This meeting is credited with paving the way for the end of apartheid in South Africa. Based on the ideas of the chairman of the meeting, President Abdou Diouf…

Can Sub-National Autonomy Strengthen Democracy in Bolivia?

Jean-Paul Faguet addresses the issue of decentralization and accountability in Bolivia in the article “Can Sub-National Autonomy Strengthen Democracy in Bolivia?” published in 2013 by the Journal of Federalism. He notes that Bolivia is one of the most radical decentralization reformers, and has recently implemented new reforms granting autonomy to local governments. Faguet seeks to…

Good Governance Begins with the Individual

Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), a German political foundation, thinks decentralization alone does not lead to more democracy, but it can promote the democratization process. In the report “Good Governance Begins with the Individual” (2012), KAS impressively demonstrates examples of individual projects which have been very successful in different countries. KAS mentioned that, in spite of…